Casey Prince, coach of Ubuntu Cape Town, reacts during Friday's Nedbank Cup win over AmaZulu in Durban. Photo: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Ubuntu Cape Town tackle Royal Eagles at the Athlone Stadium today (kickoff 3pm) in a National First Division match that sees a lot riding on the outcome for both sides at the wrong end of the standings.

The two strugglers are just above the relegation zone with three rounds to go but by only a point separates them.

With Mthatha Bucks (21 points) propping up the log and set to be one of the two teams to lose their second-tier status, who will follow them out the exit door is a conundrum for the five other threatened sides to fathom out.

As things stand, Richards Bay (28) sit in the ejection seat.

Reigning Motsepe League Champions Uthongathi FC (28) are third bottom, leaving Ubuntu and Eagles to complete the bottom five, with both locked on 29.

Ubuntu coach Casey Prince said his boys have gelled well this year and that results had been on the up. “We’re one of the best teams in the division in 2018 in terms of results,” American-born Prince said.

“We’ve played with plenty of passion and expect to see us have a full go at Eagles, who come to the Mother City seeking a season double after triumphing 4-2 in the first encounter.

"But we have home field advantage this time round and will aim to make it count.

“For sure a win will ease our plight. The three points ... we net them and our chances of staying up improve drastically.”.

KZN-based Eagles haven’t had a win from their past four outings, while their opponents have managed one from the same number.

Ninth-placed Stellenbosch FC entertain fourth-placed play-off contenders Witbank Spurs at Athlone tomorrow (kickoff 3pm).

Spurs are on a roll. Last time out they defeated rivals Black Leopards 2-0 at home to move up the table and force their way into contention for either a second or third-placed finish.

Just the one loss for former PSL outfit Spurs from nine matches, while Stellies have moved in the other direction following weeks of inconsistency, the end result being zero chance of making the play-offs.

The Mother City’s third NFD club, Cape Town All Stars, were in action yesterday against Highlands Park at Parow Park.

An All Stars victory appeared unlikely as Park are streaks ahead of the rest and have banged in three or four goals in just about every game over months of dominance, so the 1-1 draw was not a surprise.

A 51st minute strike from Tshepo Mashigo cancelled out Park's 1-0 lead, which came via Mothobi Mvala's first half freekick.

The draw extends the Lions of the North’s unbeaten run to 23 matches, while Stars missed out on a slim chance of claiming a third-placed finish.

Today’s other NFD fixtures (home teams first): Mthatha Bucks v Jomo Cosmos; Real Kings v University of Pretoria; Super Eagles v TTM FC; Uthongathi FC v Mbombela United; Black Leopards v Richards Bay FC.

Weekend Argus

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